“India’s Chess Achievements Soar: AICF Chief Predicts 100 GMs Soon”

According to Sanjay Kapoor, head of the All India Chess Federation (AICF), Indian chess has entered a “golden era” and will soon have more than a hundred Grandmasters. Viswanathan Anand, a five-time World Champion, has rightfully dominated the discussion of Indian chess for many years. The dynamics, however, have shifted over the past ten years as a result of young people like R Praggnanandhaa, D Gukesh, and Arjun Erigaisi making significant strides in the global arena. In the past, there was only one Vishy (Anand), but now, according to Kapoor, “the golden era of chess has started in India.”

“Anand is a dependable player. He represents Indian chess. However, with more faces, Indian chess will benefit greatly, he remarked. India produced its 83rd Grandmaster, Aditya Samant, in July of this year, and according to Kapoor, the nation will generate its 100th GM as soon as possible. “There are a lot of new players, both men and women. We currently have 83 Grandmasters, but in two years, that number will at least double, if not triple.

When he defeated the world’s second-ranked player, Hikaru Nakamura, and the third-ranked player, Fabiano Caruna, teenage GM Praggnanandhaa captured the nation’s attention and won the silver medal in the FIDE World Cup. He became the third-youngest candidate to qualify for the Candidates Tournament and the youngest player in history to play in the final. Additionally, it was the first time that four Indians—Pragganandhaa, Gukesh, Erigaisi, and Vidit Gujarathi—entered the tournament’s quarterfinal round. India successfully hosted the Olympics the previous year and took home bronze in both the men’s and women’s divisions.




Kapoor wants to host camps and tournaments all throughout India to promote chess and maintain the momentum. “Tamil Nadu is India’s chess capital. However, players have begun to arrive from other locations. Chess should be introduced everywhere, from Jammu and Kashmir to the Northeast. “An Asian Games camp is being held in Kolkata. I traveled to Kanpur with the AGM. In Kanpur, Arjun rose to prominence,” he remarked. According to Kapoor, the federation is also putting together an Indian Chess League.

“We’re starting a league. prior to the first week of January… Although I am unsure of the approximate dates, we are working on them, he added. Chess is now underfunded in India, leaving parents in a difficult position as they try to support their children’s aspirations. However, Kapoor believes that with the recent success, money and sponsorships will soon start to flood in for the sport. Jo dikhta woh hi bikta. No one in India was previously interested in chess, and no one was giving us room, but at least now we are receiving that. “People will watch us now, and corporate clients are going to come in and start funding,” he said.

Chess should be taught in schools, in the opinion of the AICF chief, because it can aid in the development of a country. “I would like everyone to be aware of chess. Chess is a game that builds nations, thus every family should have at least one child who plays it. Chess needs to be developed in India, and we need to ensure that it is included in the curriculum. That’s what we’ve been doing. The curriculum is nearly finished. Chess will likely become a theme in the future, in my opinion. Chess helps you advance by sharpening your thoughts and developing solid motor abilities. Your brain gets sharper because you consider the subsequent movements up until the very last one. That is how we must advance India, he continued. After a 13-year absence, chess will make a comeback at the Asian Games. A 10-person Indian team, led by seasoned Grandmaster.



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